1 9 8 8 – 1 9 9 8 (UK)
Following a one-off Christmas special in 1986, Gareth Hale and Norman Pace became household names with this phenomenally successful series for LWT.
A rapidly-paced (occasionally notorious) mix of stand-up and sketches that stayed just the right side of Broadcasting Standards, the series won the Silver Rose at Montreux and made the two former PE teachers one of the most mimicked comedy acts in television history.
The pair met while studying at Avery Hill teacher training college in London and formed a strong bond through their shared sense of humour. After performing for several years on stage and on the radio, they started getting telly work.
Their regular characters varied from their nightclub bouncers – “The Management” – in which they came across as a pair of thugs, to their “Billy and Johnny” (pictured), children’s entertainers that presented them as the blancmange softies they really were.